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“Very good in some areas but can this be considered "value for money"?”
Review of Kinloch Lodge

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Kinloch Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
37 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Very good in some areas but can this be considered "value for money"?”
Reviewed 5 August 2014

We stayed at Kinloch Lodge for one night as we had opted for the DBB package. The reception is reached following arrows and seems to be the bar - which is fine as that is where we had our 'complimentary' arrival drinks.

Our bedroom was situated in a separate contemporary building (designed to look like the original Lodge but is less than 20 years old). We were given room 16 which had a pleasant side view of the Loch. The furnishings were plush and the bed was as large as it was comfortable but the TV was of a rather ancient disposition (which was acceptable as we were here for the views and the food). However, on entering the room one could feel that it was extremely warm (and for no obvious reason). We couldn't open the window much as i) it was held in place by a chain screwed into the window frame and ii) the staff member who showed us the room cautioned us against leaving the window open whilst eating as midges might enter the room.

We awoke at approx 2 a.m. and the room was very hot despite it being cool outside (and no heating was on). A fan was at hand so we used that to bring in cool air from outside and tried to return to sleep. Alas, the room remained inordinately hot so a sound sleep was not possible.The contrast of the temperatures between the bedroom and the adjoining bathroom was apparent when we arose in the morning. We concluded that there must have been 'something' that was keeping our room hot.

The cost of the DBB was £170 per person was means the room and breakfast cost £100 per person i.e. £200 for the two of us. It is questionable that this can be considered value for money.

If we had to stay again we would opt to pay for an upgraded loch view room (rooms 17,18,19) providing the occasion warranted the extra £50 plus per person.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank unana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (172)
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English first
East Sussex
Level Contributor
135 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2014

We stayed here overnight on 17th July on a DBB basis. On arrival, we were a little puzzled and looking for reception when a member of staff approached us and guided us to a lounge where other guests were indulging in afternoon tea. We were offered a welcome glass of champagne. A little later we were shown the location of the main dining room, the private dining room and bar area. We were recommended to use the bar or lounge area for pre-dinner drinks. Our 'escort' then took us to our room in South Lodge which is a separate building some 200 yards or more from the main building so umbrellas are available for the inevitable wet walk to the dining room but you have to be quick to get one!.

The room was spacious and overlooks the loch. It was very comfortable with a sofa and armchair as well as the obvious large bed and other furniture.The en-suite shower room was fine with a good supply of towels and robes. Hair conditioner does not appear to be routinely supplied but you can ask for it. NOTE: Best to do this before you get in the shower!! A large walk in dressing room also had a fridge but this was only stocked with water and fresh milk which was a very good touch. Other drinks were available in the ground floor sitting room which operated an honesty bar system. The TV was not the most up to date and if one were staying here for a few days, given the tendency to inclement weather, its likely its functionality would not be acceptable to many people who rightly expect top end services for top end prices.

On arrival in the main building for dinner we first went to the bar which is a relatively small room and all seats were taken by a private party of 10 or more people so we went to the lounge instead. This was fine and we enjoyed an exquisite selection of canapés with our aperitif.

The set menu for dinner had been adapted to reflect that we do not eat meat.The whole meal was very good and some dishes were outstanding. Service was impeccable. All tables were taken and consequently towards the end of service, there was a room full of very contented people, replete with excellent food and wines and the atmosphere amongst diners was relaxed. After dinner we (amongst other diners) elected to have coffee and drinks in the lounge. However shortly after we sat down in the lounge the large private party arrived. I do not wish to imply that this group were anything other than nice courteous people but their size simply dominated the room and this appears to have prompted other smaller parties to leave. We stayed but felt a little overwhelmed and regretted that the 'chat' we had enjoyed with other diners could not be continued. When we were leaving the main building we passed the bar area and noticed that a number of people who had initially chosen to end their dining experience in the lounge had moved to the bar.

Breakfast was OK and I am sure would be considered excellent if you eat meat. There was no evidence of a full vegetarian breakfast. That said, the boiled eggs and toasted soldiers were the best - ever!

Overall this hotel's target market is high end customers and to achieve this, Chef Tully is doing his bit but needs to consider vegetarians in the breakfast offer. However the hotel side needs some serious re-thinking. In particular, that there is no reception area ( I settled the bill in the bar) so there is no focal point to steer towards on arrival. The lounge/bar space is totally insufficient to comfortably accommodate all guests after dinner when both the main and private dining rooms are in use.

Since reading other reviews I have reflected on the total cost and agree with others it was expensive for what it is - a 3 star hotel. I have no trouble paying £70-80 per head for dinner if it is very good and this was and well worth the money. There is however no justification for 2 small glasses of Cloudy Bay costing more than the typical retail price of a bottle . Breaking down the total bill it seems the headline costs for Bed & Breakfast was around £200 per room and that is simply not justified by the standard offered in the public areas. Put simply it is fleecing a captive market.

Would I stay there again? I was asked this when settling the bill and I responded yes. I would now give a cautious yes depending on whether I see evidence of the management listening to customer feedback. Would I recommend the restaurant and Chef Tully? Absolutely yes.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank skyecorrina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2014

I came here with my wife for a romantic break, even though friends had warned us against choosing the highlands of Scotland in summer because of the bad weather and midges. Thankfully we lucked out with both!
Kinloch is a special place in an amazing setting. There have been some bad reviews on here, but I'm beginning to realise it's the same story everywhere when it comes to Tripadvisor. I've finally joined to try and balance out the neggie noras!
Our room in the old house was lovely with an amazing view. The bed was gorgeous and we slept like logs, not just because of the whisky! The food was exceptional. We are a bit sceptical when it comes to Michelin star places but it was not fancy or precious for sake of being artistic, it was just plain yummy. The staff are a great bunch, friendly, relaxed and helpful.
My wife and I loved it here and are planning to return for a weekend in witner. It's rare to find hotels with character these days, particularly in remote corners of the UK, and Kinloch is the perfect pad for exploring the many wonders Skye has to offer.
ps: Tips elsewhere on the island - go to Neist Point on the western tip for sunset, Skye Weavers is a great couple with a cycle loom that makes beautiful tweed in a wooden hut, a walk along The Quirang is a once in a lifetime experience.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bradley S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maidenhead, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
78 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2014

We came down from the summer isles to spend a weekend in Skye. We picked Kinloch Lodge and were pleased we did.
Our room (#5) had beautiful views down to the water, over the bay and had a seating area, so like a mini suite. It was finished tastefully and had an excellent, large bathroom with separate walk in shower.
The food in the restaurant was the standard you expect from a Michelin starred chef - yummy.
My only small negative was that the staff, although friendly and helpful seemed a little disorganised. For example I think I was asked five times what time we wanted for our dinner reservation.
Would I stay there gain - YES!

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view, and understand I'd you will be in the main block, or the new (& separate...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Alan C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 July 2014

Our room was very expensive and not really that nice. The staff we encountered was helpful and attentive. The restaurant was stuffy and the food was not that great. There were no screens in our windows, which is mind boggling. We had to keep the windows closed at all times so the midges (like mosquitos) would not enter our room. Therefore, we were too hot to get a good night's sleep. I do not recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jennifer k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Knowle, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 July 2014

we booked for afternoon tea two days prior to our visit. When we arrived the waiter asked if we wanted the full afternoon tea or to share. .When we said yes he was a bit put out then shuffled off saying he would get it organised and the scones would be cooked freshly. He put two large leather pouffes together on which to balance the teapots and plates. There was insufficient space for 4 of us to sit round and one member of our party had to sit apart from us against a wall. I did at this stage ask if we could perhaps have a table .Emphatically no was the response as they were all laid up for dinner. I then asked if we could move the furniture so that we could sit together - Not the best start . When asked what type of tea was available he said he had made us English breakfast no choice as was clearly stated on menu. I asked for something different but he was unsure what tea was available. The sandwiches , cakes and pastries were brought to us by another waiter who said that the previous waiter would be along shortly to explain the sandwiches, cakes and pastries on offer. Our tea was very weak indeed even though it had been given ample time to brew so I asked for a stronger pot. On his return we said could we see the other waiter as he had suggested but he told us to read the menu as it was all on there .I asked for the other waiter to still come and tell me and eventually he did this .
Whilst some of the cakes were delicious my cucumber and cheese sandwich was dry .I guess I had the first slice of an old loaf that had dried out . However, the scones were the biggest disappointment as they were rock hard and difficult to cut .My friend went to ask if this is what they should be like as we had never experienced scones like these. She had been a secret diner with Betty's tea rooms so had experienced many afternoon teas .The member of staff she spoke to said that he was not a chef but that they may be a different texture to the ones we were used to.He did offer to get some more but she said that she would have the ones she had been given if they were how they should be.To be fair someone half way through did offer to move us to a table but this was too little too late.
This has to be one of the most interesting afternoon teas I have ever been to. The lack of attention to detail ,thin paper serviettes cups balanced on a wobbly pouffe and indifferent unknowledgeable service.
This afternoon tea was meant to be a treat for our friends who were celebrating their 35 th anniversary the only plus was because it was like something out of Fawlty Towers it was quite amusing and memorable .I did look to see if there were any candid cameras anywhere just in case we had been set up .
I wonder what the food and service is like at dinner if they find afternoon tea a challenge that they failed to meet.

Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
7 Thank newtonsbruises
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
34 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 July 2014

We booked 2 nights at Kinloch and it was a beautiful location and property. But more impressive than the property was the wonderful staff. They were always attentive and courteous. The dinners were excellent and we loved retiring to one of the sitting rooms for after dinner tea/drinks. The entire property has a great family feel. You could almost forget it is a hotel and feel like you are an invited guest at a Lord's manor.

When we visited some friends near Edinburgh, they asked where we were staying in the Isle of Skye. We then told them Kinloch and found out that our friend was a great admirer of Lady Claire Macdonald who had written many books on entertaining and cooking. Unfortunately, we did not meet Lady Claire who was not at the property during our stay, but the staff was kind enough to have one of her books signed later for our friend and sent to her home.

All in all, we had a wonderful stay and would recommend the property highly to anyone wanting an intimate vacation. Wish we had more time.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Connie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Kinloch Lodge

Property: Kinloch Lodge
Address: Sleat IV43 8QY, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > The Hebrides > Isle of Skye > Sleat
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Sleat
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3 star — Kinloch Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kinloch Lodge, the home of world-renowned cook and author Claire Macdonald and her husband Godfrey, high chief of the Clan Donald. Enjoy exquisite views and sumptuous food in their ancestral home. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kinloch Hotel Sleat
Kinloch Lodge Isle Of Skye/Sleat, Scotland

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